Unit 3: Lesson 3: First Amendment Close Reading Score: /15 UserID- Directions:

Unit 3: Lesson 3: First Amendment Close Reading
Score: /15
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Directions:
Before reading this letter, make sure you have closely read Moses Seixas letter to President Washington. Then,
Read President Washington’s letter in response to Mr. Seixas.
After you have read the letter once, read it again, underlining the three passages in which President Washington explains how civil liberties are guaranteed to all citizens.
Finally, read the letter a third time and answer the questions that follow it.
In your answers, please keep in the mind the context of the letter’s audience, or to whom it was written.
George Washington’s Letter to the Hebrew Congregation in Newport, Rhode Island
Gentlemen:
While I received with much satisfaction your address replete with expressions of esteem, I rejoice in the opportunity of assuring you that I shall always retain grateful remembrance of the cordial welcome I experienced on my visit to Newport from all classes of citizens.
The reflection on the days of difficulty and danger which are past is rendered the more sweet from a consciousness that they are succeeded by days of uncommon prosperity and security.
If we have wisdom to make the best use of the advantages with which we are now favored, we cannot fail, under the just administration of a good government, to become a great and happy people.
The citizens of the United States of America have a right to applaud themselves for having given to mankind examples of an enlarged and liberal policy—a policy worthy of imitation. All possess alike liberty of conscience and immunities of citizenship.
It is now no more that toleration is spoken of as if it were the indulgence of one class of people that another enjoyed the exercise of their inherent natural rights, for, happily, the Government of the United States, which gives to bigotry no sanction, to persecution no assistance, requires only that they who live under its protection should demean themselves as good citizens in giving it on all occasions their effectual support.
It would be inconsistent with the frankness of my character not to avow that I am pleased with your favorable opinion of my administration and fervent wishes for my felicity.
May the children of the stock of Abraham who dwell in this land continue to merit and enjoy the good will of the other inhabitants— while every one shall sit in safety under his own vine and fig tree and there shall be none to make him afraid.
May the father of all mercies scatter light, and not darkness, upon our paths, and make us all in our several vocations useful here, and in His own due time and way everlastingly happy.
G. Washington
Why does President Washington say that the people of the U.S. should be proud of themselves? Use a quote from the letter to justify your answer. (2 points)
Read the fifth paragraph several times. Based on the passage, explain how, according to President Washington, the Constitution changed the U.S. government in terms of civil liberties. (5 points)
Explain how this letter exemplifies the liberties outlined in the first amendment. (5 points)
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